September 2014

Bravo! And Encore, a few months from now
Posted by Gordon Gross on 09/28/14
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You can pick any game.   The one with the rookie ump and the joke of a strike zone?  That's a game lost.   Any of Rodney's blown saves? One less and we'd be in the playoffs - or at least the playoff for the playoffs.   Early season road losing streak or late one, poor home record, too many losses to bottom-feeders.  One more hit, one less run scored against us, and we're there.  We had 60+ games with 0-2 runs scored.   We lost 27 games by one measly run.  One run.   Over 162 games, it's a quirk of the game, a less-than-lovely happenstance in this case, that we got 1400+ of innings of baseball... Read More
You KNOW you saw this guy in Mad Max, somewhere
Posted by jemanji on 09/26/14
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. Gordon sez, Gordon Gross: LoMo is locking down first base at this point (with both Peterson and Kivlehan pushing for consideration in about a year). We need a DH and a corner OF. LoMo doesn't seem really comfortable DHing (and as an NL dude I don't blame him) so I don't want to make him. Saunders, Brooklyn and Austin Jackson can cobble together a CF/glove OF look. But Kendrys as a 2 year proposition? MAN would he have to be cheap for that to happen, and as a Boras client, cheap isn't exactly the phrase that springs to mind. Just trade for Kemp in the OF, and let Dustin and Saunders split DH... Read More
Dr. D, to everyone's surprise, has an opinion on the matter
Posted by jemanji on 09/26/14
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. If Dr. D's musings on Life, Love, and Hope tend to run contrary to your taste, you certainly ain't going to like this one.  Run screaming.  Your friend, Jeff ..... Gordon sez, Gordon Gross: ESPN has a poll: "Where does Derek Jeter rank among the best baseball players of all time?" Options are top 5, top 10, top 15. top 25 and not in the top 25. Only 30% of ESPN correctly guessed "not in the top 25." The rest must be New Yawkahs or silly football fans on a 9 day bender... . "Correctly guessed"  :- )  Heh!  Matt follows on, "Not in the top 50," which is commendable objectivity since he's from... Read More
Which player do you draft next June?
Posted by jemanji on 09/26/14
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. Bat 571 sez, Bat571: So with apologies, let me bring up another comparison. Which pair would you rather have - Josh Willingham at DH and Jeter at SS, or Edgar at DH and Brad Miller or Chris Taylor at SS. Jeter was a VERY good player for many years and I wholeheartedly agree he set a standard along with Ripken on how to play. But teams found him annoying rather than fearing him at the plate, and he was not a good SS. If Edgar is not a HoFer, Jeter is certainly not an inner-circle HoFer as many are trying to portray him. Pujols, Trout, Joey Bats, Miggy, and others today are more impactful... Read More
Point Counterpoint, Dept.
Posted by jemanji on 09/23/14
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. The Shout Box isn't ideally suited to a comprehensive discussion.  So here's a thread.  As you know, we live to serve. A fascinating idea was tossed into the Shout Box (?!).  It gained surprising traction, the suggestion that you have to be lucky to get two years in a row of great pitching.  Let's start with a compliment for such a provocative idea, that it immediately gained lots of interest and lots of agreement. SSI is here as a think tank; allow Dr. D to infuse his own take here, again with admiration for the profound suggestion that is, in his opinion, missing a key point or two.  We... Read More
Here's Dr. D being desperate
Posted by jemanji on 09/23/14
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. I would compare the M's situation to that of an NFL team, down 14 points at halftime.  (That's about an 11% chance of winning for the bad guys, by the way.  Advanced NFL Stats gave a mere 4% chance of winning to Houston, down 14 with 5 minutes left in the 3rd quarter). There isn't a lot of margin for error.  The M's simply have to win now, no excuses.  If they go 5-1 then the Royals will probably go 3-3 or worse.  Statistically speaking, the Royals have the following chances of winning X games or less, proceeding only from the basis that they're a .545 team: 57% chance, winning 3 games or... Read More
1st vs 2nd-order thinking, Dept.
Posted by jemanji on 09/22/14
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. 49ers' fans take great comfort in labeling Russ Wilson a "game manager."  (They need it.)  Seahawks' fans chip their teeth with just as much enthusiasm, hearing this.  Troy Aikman bristled about it during the Super Bowl:  "You're taking away from him everything he's done on 3rd down, everything he's done outside the pocket, taking away all the wins." Dr. D thinks he knows why --- > fans scoff at "game managers," players and teams who play intelligently rather than as if the game were a first-person shooter.  The Spurs didn't play the NBA finals as though it were a video game.  Greg... Read More
Is the coin op starting to look a little retro here?
Posted by jemanji on 09/21/14
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. On Iwakuma The TNT quoted McClendon thusly: ... McClendon dismissed the suggestion that Iwakuma is wearing down. “I don’t know why it would be fatigue,” he said. “He was off for two months. We rested him every opportunity we had a chance to do that. I’m not sure what’s going on, but we’ve got to get it straightened out quickly.” . It would be fatigue because of:   the 750-pitch weekends as a teenager ... the same training/game methods that Matsuzaka used ... the shoulder history ... and the fact that Iwakuma is as opposite to James Paxton as the Angels' front office is to the Mariners'.  ... Read More
Hitter focus, dept.
Posted by Gordon Gross on 09/20/14
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One of SSI's favorite characterizations is, "Can you win your next pennant with X in a primary role?"  Willie Bloomquist does not make the cut, which is why he's a backup (or not on the 25-man) of our future pennant winner.  Felix probably slides in under the cut line.  Of course, when we WIN our first pennant in a few weeks this whole list will be wrong ;-) but for argument's sake: how do we look near the regular-season end to the best baseball team Seattle has fielded in a decade?   Let's do it by position.  First, the lineup:   -------------------   Catcher: - Mike Zunino (RH). Mike broke... Read More
January roster plans, like Dr D's shtick, often go awry
Posted by jemanji on 09/20/14
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. Diderot sez, All winter long the national writers who bought the Baker/Wedge/Blengino hatchet job hook, line and sinker were just looking for Jack's next mistake. So remember the line on this?--"sure, Hart or Morrison makes sense--but both? Bad roster construction!" I think Jack, at heart, is a hoarder. As in accumulating masses of talent. Most begrudgingly give him credit for scouting, and not much more. But he knows that talent selection, even for the most astute, is still a crap shoot. The way you win is to make more bets. Eventually, if you are competent, some of them HAVE to work out... Read More
Reminded Dr. D of the 1990's Bartolo Colon
Posted by jemanji on 09/19/14
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. The Mariners stripped down Taijuan's motion and approach.  He served fastballs, splitters, and hooks into the strike zone with the robotic monotony of an old fireman crew handing buckets of water down the line.   The result:  8 strikeouts, 1 walk, nothing resembling a fly ball to the track, and 15 swings-and-misses.  This despite Taijuan being a pale shadow of his future self.  Slap me silly. There was a confusing jumble of good, bad and ugly on the yellow legal pad.  Think you can make any sense of it? . HI Thusly: Threw strikes at will.  Great "control," not to say "command" Plus-plus-... Read More
"You cannot be serious" Dept.
Posted by jemanji on 09/19/14
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. My wife and I like to make up captions for the goofy faces they put on the scoreboard. "Can I bring her home at nine, Sir?"  (ingratiating face) "We get fruit cup!"  (absurdly happy face) "Best brownies I ever had"  (glazed eye face, vaguely happy to be there) Above, we'll go with that Vogue editor in Romy & Michelle, when the stars told her "We invented Post-Its."  um, I know you're not serious here.   Zduriencik couldn't have traded Carter Capps for a starting 1B, right. . IceX sez, The difference:  All the other blogs, and even some of us, have been questioning the difference between... Read More
6 years to become an overnight success, Dept.
Posted by jemanji on 09/18/14
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. Believe it or don't :- ) as Logan Morrison stepped up to the plate, something weird ate at the edge of Dr. D's consciousness like an invisible monster chewing on his Dungeons & Dragons paladin.   The "something weird" wiggled around and finally congealed into an odd morphic resonance within Dr. D's slimy but agile mind: "there are three guys who could get us this 'Hard RBI'.  Those being Ackley, Seager, or Logan Morrison.  Wow, this guy is the guy we want up there.  Wait, what?" You don't believe it?  Don't blame you.  ... Waitaminnit:  this is SSI.  You all had the same feeling,... Read More
Don't be here (in the Wild Card Game) when I am
Posted by jemanji on 09/18/14
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. No, LrKrBoi11 ;- ) he ain't back because he blew away a depleted Angels' lineup.  He's back, is 'cause of the (glorious) flight of the ball ... his delivery of his CG to the left front sector of the mound ... and his deployment of the old baffling myriad of pitch sequences. We guess this makes sense.  All pitchers, other than Randy Johnson and apparently James Paxton, go through biorhythms.   Grant Green had kind of a tough night.  In the immortal words of Bruce Lee:  "You want me to prove it?  Okay!  I'll prove it!  I'll need some one to prove it ON ..." . Grant Green, IP 7 Welcome to... Read More
It was going great until the triple axel
Posted by jemanji on 09/18/14
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. The Shout Box often contains 90% of everything that Dr. D crunched off the mainframe.  This makes his own postgame-report job either (1) very easy or (2) totally impossible.  Depends on your orientation. . OBF SEZ: Man.... Paxton may be better than Unit, King, Moyer, EVERYONE when all is said and done... 98 MPH UP in the zone from a lefty, 93 mph cutter boring in on the righties, a knuckle curve for gimmie strikes and a changeup that after some refinement will rival The Royal Change... You Go Paxton! Now lets score him a couple runs!!! . Dr. D sez:  and that wasn't even the fabled "whipsaw... Read More
The good news is, we didn't sell our souls
Posted by jemanji on 09/18/14
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. The M's statistical pregame notes can be kinda fun to read.  We'll skim a bit of the cream off the top for yer. . By the Numbahs .375 or so - Typical AL winning percentage when scoring exactly 3 runs .550 - M's winning percentage when scoring exactly 3 runs (11-9) .787 - M's winning percentage when scoring 3 runs or more (127-win pace) ABSOLUTELY DOMINATING - How good are the M's when they can scratch out a few runs 18 - How many times this year have the M's now been shut out  Corey Hart - whose contingency bonus was reshuffled to trade deadline acquisitions $0.00 - How much more than this... Read More
… or not
Posted by jemanji on 09/17/14
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. The above image was actually captured a few hours BEFORE the Mariner blowout on Tuesday.  Dr. D's hairstyle would not be what it is today, if he did not find his greatest joys in the challenge of applying electroshock to patients with no visible breath. But, he will cheerfully admit, his patient's lethargy was having a deleterious effect on his students' interest and morale.  Doubling the voltage did provide them with the spectacle of this satisfying, roaring vault off the table last night: Dr. D's beloved patient may need to lay back down and catch his breath for a day or two, against... Read More
Call Dr. D's tech department in the morning
Posted by jemanji on 09/17/14
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. Season's on!  Season's off!  Season's on!  Season's off! Ya mooks, youse.  :: grrrrr :: ......... We listened to (some of) the game on radio.  The M's got 14 hits and 4 walks, but then again, on Sunday they got 12 hits and walks in a shutout.   Dr. D figured that, on Tuesday, Pascal's triangle had simply worked its BABIP magic -- that all of these randomly-struck balls simply found grass this time.  Later that night, he turned on his DVR to watch the bloops fall in. Not hardly!  He was stunned to watch one smoked line shot after another.  Here's How.  Later we'll riff as to the Why. After a... Read More
Which one does Jack claim?
Posted by Gordon Gross on 09/16/14
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From the inestimable DaddyO:      ...it's beginning to look like this team is exactly what we expected, a .500-plus-a-few-games team. It could have been so much more with the pickup of one solid bat over the offseason and a couple at the trade deadline. We all instinctively knew it at the time; either Jack just failed to execute, again, or he was, again, just unlucky. People will pick which one based on their view of Jack. I know which one I pick.     Look, let's say this right now:  The Mariners are looking like the first team out of the playoffs, with our chance of making the dance falling... Read More
M's and Seahawks each with 14 rounds to go
Posted by jemanji on 09/15/14
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. LrkrBoi30 sez, M's would have to play KC for the right to be the WC2 and play the WC1 in an elimination game, even though we won the head-to-head series. They only use the tiebreaker to determine home field advantage, not an actual playoff birth (so at least we would host the play-in for the play-in) Evidence: http://m.mlb.com/news/article/59527184/playoff-tiebreaker-rules Keep up the good work! I had a birthday recently so I upgraded from LurKrBoi29, by the way. ... You're right.  Thanks for the correction.  :- ) I can't find the link I mis-read, but it doesn't matter ... I shoulda... Read More
M's -1.0 games behind KC, but have tiebreaker in hand
Posted by jemanji on 09/14/14
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. Q.  What is the probability of the M's making the postseason?  2%, or 5%, or what? A.  According to MLB.com, it's 43%.  Flip a coin.  Your chances of calling it correctly, are about the same as the M's chances of gearing up for a big national TV game in October. Of course, you have no feelings about the coin; you do have residual electroshock convulsions when you look at a Mariner logo.  Those were acquired from the last two horrible games.  But, as with dice and coins, MLB teams tend to forget what happened on the last toss.   "Momentum is as good as that night's starting pitcher."  Again... Read More
How does Dr. D define sizzle? Riveting games in September, that's how
Posted by jemanji on 09/13/14
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. Emphasis on the below Sizzlers ... . James Paxton In our pregame on Friday, we gave these as the keys to his short-term futures price: LO:  Paxton finally takes a mulligan, unable to find the strike zone, loses badly MID:  He throws strikes, has no pitchability, and sheer stuff produces an Ultra Quality Start HI:  He finally gets a whipsaw, and pitchability, going, fanning 8+ (Orcs' fan excerpts tomorrow) Oddly, he was --- > 65% LO ... 35% HI ... with 0% MID. He had less command than we've seen in a long time, maybe ever.  This seemed to arise from the home plate ump squeeeeeezing him... Read More
Something is golden in that kid! He's pretty good you know!
Posted by moethedog on 09/13/14
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Beating a dead horse here, I know. James Paxton:  14 career starts:  Average game = 6 innings/4.3 hits allowed/4.8K's/1.8BB's/ 93.4 pitches thrown/57.8 strikes/16 strikes looking and 8 strikes swinging Last night he was 6 innings/4 hits/8 K's/3 BB's/103 pitches/57 strikes/17 looking and 8 swinging. Basically he was absolutely "average" (for him) last night.  Well, his strike % fell from 63% to 56% and he walked an extra guy, but he was "effectively wild" as he K'ed 8, a number he has only exceeded twice.   We want to think that a flame-throwing lefty like Paxton should be K'ing guys left and... Read More
He says his cutter and changeup are coming along
Posted by mojician on 09/12/14
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James Paxton says he's been working hard to develop his other two pitches, his changeup and cutter.  For Paxton, its pretty much been a fastball and curveball show. The Brooks table on what pitches Paxton favors: Month 4 Seam FB Cutter Curve  Slider Change 3/14 64.21% 9.47% 17.89% 0% 7.89% 4/14 59.49% 15.82% 16.46% 0% 8.23% 8/14 66.02% 2.8% 20.83% 0% 10.75% 9/14 67.2% 10.05% 15.87% 0% 5.82%             So, Paxton is a two pitch guy.  His fastball is his bread and butter, his curve ball is his two strike pitch, and he uses the cutter and change up as show me pitches.  Here's the movement... Read More
How soon Dr. D forgets the Lastros series
Posted by jemanji on 09/12/14
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. It's one thing to watch a good, tediously methodical team like the Spurs (cf. Iwakuma).  It's another thing to watch a fun, dynamic team like the Heat (cf. Taijuan).  It's a third thing to watch a team that is fun and good, like the Showtime Lakers.  Or the Showtime Seahawks. James Paxton, of course, is off-the-charts on both scales.  It's a treat to watch him pitch.  Don't forget to tingle, even if only from the keister as you sit motionless for three hours while savoring tonight's ballgame. Paxton should be spending his first 30-50 career starts muddling through a 5.50 ERA.  That was the... Read More
Dr. D celebrates his inner Kindergarten child (and classmates)
Posted by jemanji on 09/12/14
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. The Counselor thanks us all for the insight we've provided on the Oakland A's this year.  That's a little bit like Pete Carroll thanking Dave "Softy" Mahler for his suggestions on cornerback play. But Mojo has not a single Muhammad Ali / Richard Sherman bone in his body, which is in sharp contradistinction to the shtick loudmouthed by that TIC "Dr. Detecto" character.  :- )   Hey, if Richard weren't flanked by charming, humble Russell Wilsons and dour, silently menacing Beasts, he wouldn't be half the fun.  Like Chuck Knox said, paraphrased, "Nothing wrong with a Richard Sherman in the... Read More
Editor's Choice … for the application of a "Mercy Rule," that is
Posted by jemanji on 09/11/14
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. You might think it was excusable to lose to Chris Sale, or to Randy Johnson, or to Lefty Grove, or to Sydd Finch for that matter.  Not so at Athletics Nation :- ) The worst thing about this series is, we could have easily gone 3-1. All of our three losses were one-run contests, with two coming via epic late inning collapses. That’s the worst. If the A’s had just gotten blown out like a normal bad team, this would have been easier to stomach... No, no, no, the worst thing about this series was the pitching. The pitching was absolutely masterful. Jeff Samardjiza, Sonny Gray, and Scott Kazmir ... Read More
Who's under more pressure, us or Oakland?
Posted by jemanji on 09/10/14
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. Three of these four teams get a ticket to the Bright Lights, Big Cit-eh: Team W L GB Orcs 81 64 -- Royals (Central Div) 80 64 0.5 Tiggers 80 66 1 Seattle 79 66 1.5 In Ball Four, Jim Bouton relayed the Seattle Pilots' locker room in July.  Guys were sitting around after another loss, talking about the exciting games going on between the Tigers (yes), Orcs (yes), and Twins.  (Check me if I'm wrong; it was Reggie Jackson's rookie year, or pretty close, and he hit 40+ homers as a kid.  The Tigers and Twins would fade, IIRC, but the A's were on a groundswell that would lead into one of history's... Read More
Why can't we have some W's? .. aw, just a mouthful
Posted by jemanji on 09/08/14
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. For those who just joined us, the local club has to beat out ONE (1) of the following rivals.  Another way to put that is, whichever of these three teams now plays the worst, the M's need to exceed that team's wins: Team W L GB Orcs 80 63 -- Royals (Central Div) 79 63 0.5 Seattle 78 63 1 Tiggers 79 65 1.5 . A little flavor text for yer: . Tigers 9, Royals 5 Royals fans are wringing their hands over the following spiders in their pennant sandwiches: KC is 4-10 against Detroit this year (5 games left between the two) Many/most of Detroit's wins have been blowouts, like 8+ runs scored This... Read More
39+ homers have the Orioles a little bit delirious
Posted by jemanji on 09/07/14
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. Mojo sez, [Good for Tejas, Holland beating K-Pax] That poor team deserves something to cheer about. Nobody except Oakland deserves the horrible things that have happened to the Rangers this year. Kinsler for Fielder and hold the health. Jurickson Profar, the hope of Texas up in smoke. Shin-Soo Choo goes missing. And Washington quits without two weeks notice. So they got their Holland back and he still has it. GOOD. The carnage was making me queasy.   ... Two weeks notice :- ) The rest of us in the SSI crowd doesn't know if Nelson Cruz' performance in Baltimore was included in the 'carnage'... Read More
Dr. D jumps onto the "why bother" bandwagon
Posted by jemanji on 09/07/14
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. INPUT/OUTPUT:  On a day when ONE run would have won the game (big advantage in extra innings), the Mariners couldn't even get that.   Ruining a chance to swell the Seattle possibilities even more pregnantly. CRUNCH:  The night before, the Soggy Bottom Boys waded through a 3+ hour rain delay.  This red-shifted their sorry little biological clocks badly.   That would have been plenty 'nuff of a problem, but it was the final stop on a road trip!  and then you had an early game day the next day!? Those would have been plenty 'nuff problemos too, but all of a sudden here is Derek Holland... Read More
Dr. D is, for once, at a loss for an answer
Posted by jemanji on 09/05/14
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. You know that old joke about ... Who would you rather have on your park and rec basketball team?  Jamie, or Jordan? 1.  Jamie averaged 21 points per game last year, Jordan, only 13.   Guess you'd take Jamie. . 2.  Jamie scored the 21 points in 40 minutes per game; Jordan, as a rookie to their team, scored 13 points in only 9 minutes a game. Oh!  We shoulda taken Jordan, probably. . 3.  But Jamie did it in a men's league; Jordan, in a women's league. We're back to Jamie.  PC, take a hike and turn left at the corner.  Buh-bye. . 4.  But Jamie did it in a high school league; Jordan, in the... Read More
Rangers sunk without a bubble
Posted by jemanji on 09/05/14
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. Dr. D, having carefully DVR'ed the baseball game up in the man-cave, was in the family room.  Wallowing in the "Seahawk postgame" :- ) that was broadcast on ESPN.  When all of a sudden, the left sidebar said "Mariners Roll In Texas."  Curse you, Red Baron.  That was a blunder unworthy of the resident Soccer Mom at our home.  :: ashamed :: A 10-1 lead?  Ah, thought Dr. D.  A 3-run Kyle Seager shot, two Ackley doubles, and... Not so, Jarvis!  We rolled the tape ... Dr. D witnessed something far sweeter.  The M's had compiled a 6-run second inning not via The Usual Suspects, but by rather... Read More
A long way (literally), in a short time, from Los Cardenales
Posted by jemanji on 09/05/14
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. Roenis Elias It is mystifying to Dr. D, why the TV crew is AS down on Elias as they are.  They grumbled, yet again, for an hour and a half about Elias' (admittedly) naive pitch sequences.  Then they tossed a pitchout to (left hand pitcher) Bill Krueger in the studio... 1) Bill reminded them, politely, that Roenis Elias happens to be a rookie left hand pitcher.  As compared to (say) Tyler Pike and his 6.44 ERA in AA, Roenis Elias is rather ahead of the normal learning curve. 2) Krueger also reminded us that Elias has excellent "mettle," reinforcing this by pointing out that Elias gets into... Read More
SSI brings "noble gas" for its homies
Posted by jemanji on 09/05/14
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. With the Mariners desperately trying to hold onto a 9-run lead Tuesday, like a cat hanging onto a screen door by its claws, they turned to Brandon Maurer.  Maurer struck out 3 Rangers in the inning, and ... there should be a different term for it, when a pitcher sprays flaming napalm like that.  Sending three batters staggering back to the dugout as burning zombies. Wow, said Mike Blowers.  In a 10-1 game, you sure don't expect to see a guy like THIS come into the game. You get it?  It's like the old NCAA football overmatches, when the Crimson Tide would send on their second string and then... Read More
Orcs violate Game Theory, but Dr. D swoons with admiration
Posted by jemanji on 09/03/14
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. Mojo sez, If there were a baseball doctor, (heh) and he diagnosed Felix with malaise or August swoon or dog days or dead arm, his best perscription would be: "Destroy nine orcs then call me in the morning".  Hammering these loathsome green creatures rejuvenates Felix.  He lives to slay Orcs!   Conspiracy Theory: Adam Dunn and John Lester were acquired for the specific purpose of beating Felix in the wild card game.  Here's the evidence:  1. Dunn has the best stats against Felix of any Orc.  1.188 OPS lifetime against Felix, not counting today's stats.  The other Orcs? divide Dunn's... Read More
Which of these things is not like the others, Dept.
Posted by jemanji on 09/03/14
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. Corey Hart and Kyle Seager Go All Earl-Y-Ball on the Pesky Rodent Orcs No sooner did Matty predict (gingerly) that Corey Hart or Michael Saunders would need to make the difference, than ... Corey Hart made the difference.  What a called shot there :- ) ... There was a period in the 1960's that James wryly dubbed --- > the "ticking time bomb" era.  Teams had a rough time stringing three hits, so you just sat around and waited for somebody to hit a home run.  The ratio of boredom to excitement is sky-high.  Dr. D would rather watch Tavaris Jackson than watch Ticking Time Bomb baseball.... Read More
Billy Beane's worst nightmare jells into reality
Posted by jemanji on 09/03/14
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. Felix' command within the strike zone, on Wednesday: Average to good by the standards of ML starting pitchers Disgusting by his own standards (and he was visibly disgusted, all game) It was as if you watched Jamie Moyer or Jared Weaver pitch with Tom Wilhelmsen location.  Hence a mere 4 strikeouts in 8 innings ... it's blinkin' hard to allow 1 run, complete game, when you don't strike people out! Dr. D had a hard time enjoying anything about the spectacle, but ... another 2-1 win for Felix and now he is 14-5 (!) on the season. ... Gordon had pointed out, that Billy Beane pointed out, that... Read More
The next TOR parachutes into the league with gusto
Posted by jemanji on 09/02/14
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. The team's game notes today --- > follow on SSI's (and James') idea that a huge pitching debut is strongly predictive of a good major league career.  James studied this and found that three (3) dominating starts, to begin a career, tended to lead into a very strong baseball card ... This is mostly just common sense.  If a Stephen Strasburg or Jered Weaver or Tim Lincecum type has overwhelming "stuff," if he has it in him to overmatch batters, then he's a lot more likely to do both things.  Start with a bang, and follow up. The rooster doesn't cause the sun and Mom to get up; the sun... Read More
Condor clings to his hope of ML stardom
Posted by jemanji on 09/02/14
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. New poster j.b. Kawika put several info-taining posts into this thread.  Thanks j.b. ... I'm not sure of his issues staying on the field are bad luck or the beginning of something chronic but looking ahead to next season: a starting outfield of Ackley, Jackson, and Saunders would probably project out as something like league average. And there'd be some upside there if Ackley really is a better than average hitter, if Jackson can get back to his form from a couple of years ago, and if Saunders can put it all together and do it for 140 games or so that could pretty easily be a 9 win outfield... Read More